Today on the Hill: House Readies Votes on Government Funding Packages

December 17, 2019

House lawmakers will reconvene today eyeing floor votes on two massive “minibus” spending measures following an agreement from Appropriations “Cardinals” yesterday afternoon. In addition to funding the government through the remainder of fiscal year (FY) 2020, the deal includes several wide-ranging policy provisions pertaining to Affordable Care Act (ACA) taxes, terrorism risk insurance, retirement reform, and gun violence research. Negotiators also clinched deals on extensions for key expiring health programs such as: (1) the Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) demonstration program; (2) the Money Follows the Person rebalancing demonstration; and (3) the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI).

Meanwhile, officials struck a late-night agreement on several expiring tax provisions following days of tense negotiations. The deal would extend certain tax provisions that expired at the beginning of 2018 and 2019, or that were set to expire on Jan. 1, 2020, including: (1) an extension of the medical expense deduction; (2) deductions for mortgage insurance premiums; (3) excise tax breaks for craft brewers and distilleries; and (4) credits for employer-paid family and medical leave. A full list of the “tax extenders” that have been addressed can be found here.

In the upper chamber, Senators are set to pass the confernce report for the FY 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), sending the $738 billion defense measure to President Trump’s desk for signature. The Senate is also expected to take up the spending packages at some point prior to Friday’s government funding deadline. While Republican leadership is optimistic President Donald Trump will sign these measures into law following Senate passage, the administration has, thus far, been tight-lipped on offering its full support.